I did a dual boot XP/ubuntu config for a while a couple years ago, but it just didn't do anything for me. I'm considering a new build this spring/summer, and maybe I'll run Linux on my old box just to play with it for a while. (that's what she said)
I suggest you look at VMWare player. I run Windows XP, Unbuntu and a couple of other Linux flavors as Virtual OS's in VMWare Player. No dual boot and it runs seamlessly on my Win 7 machine. I just wish I had time for the projects I installed them for.
There is no place like Nebraska,
Where they're all true blue.
We'll all stick together,
In all kinds of weather,
For dear old Nebraska U
There is a reason that there are now iMacs and other Apple products in schools now. My kids have been using iMacs in school for 7 years. I have one at home for them to do their schoolwork, and for security. We also have 3 iPod Touch's and an iPad 2. Never had any issues syncing them up at all. Even the iCal program on the iMac syncs with Google seamlessly so I can update our calendars on one machine, and distribute it to everyone. We also have a netbook that I put Ubuntu on for the kids, and no issues.
Now the laptop I am writing on, a Windows 7 based laptop, has crashed 3 times, and I have lost schoolwork. I am currently saving up for a mac laptop, for no other reason than I am tired of IBM PCs crashing, constantly needing to load updates, and the security issues involved with running Windows on my laptop. Yeah, they are more expensive, just like buying a BMW instead of a Ford. But, the maintenance is easier, the security is better, and the ease of synchronization is so much better that it is hard to keep buying Windows based computers.
You never stand so tall as when you kneel to help a child.